Texas Is Back In Business, So What Now?

Texas is opening 100% this week. What about your wedding?

Planning weddings during a pandemic has been very stressful for couples as well as wedding vendors. With last week’s announcement from Gov. Abbott, you must be wondering, “what now?”. The news is more than exciting – I know we’re all exhausted and over the pandemic. But just because we are over, it does not mean the pandemic is over. Of course, only in time for spring, everything looks way more optimistic than it was last year (YAY!)

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So what does it mean in terms of weddings and events? 

We should all keep washing our hands and social distancing when we can, as this is the new norm for most people. On a typical wedding day, I’d hug my couple first thing in the morning unless they were in the middle of having her eyelashes put on or changing. Now I offer my warm words and the geeky elbow greeting or air hug instead. I’ve had my Covid shot but will continue wearing my mask just as a precaution. I’m all about being safe and making people comfortable, so I will follow the rules as they were for now.

You can ask vendors and venue staff, and guests to wear a mask. If you have elderly wedding guests who are most at risk if they contract Covid, you should ask guests to rock those fancy face masks they probably got for your wedding anyway. On the other hand, if you want to let guests know masks are optional, you should drop them a message. They probably are wondering what the etiquette is since Texas is open.

From a photographer’s point of view, masks are not a massive problem for photos. In 2020, all my couples preferred to wear masks, as well as their families. For any important moments like the first look, family formals, or newlywed portraits, masks did come off: we can always keep a safe distance thanks to my zoom lenses during those moments. Everybody can put their masks back on after the photos. As I mentioned before, I am not worried for myself – I’m protected. But I’ll keep looking after my clients, their families, and loved ones. 

Onto the details, there are so many rules for other vendors that were more complicated than what wedding photographers faced. When Governor Abbott announced that businesses were free to operate at full capacity, you can imagine the meetings behind closed doors as venues considered numbers they would allow and caters assessed their food service options. If you haven’t heard from your venue and vendors, drop them a line and ask how this announcement might affect your big day. It is wise to stay informed and know what to expect, especially if your wedding is coming weeks or next month.

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Now you can increase your guest numbers. But keep in mind the rules can always change back if an outbreak occurs. Fingers and toes crossed that the number of Covid cases will drop, and the pandemic will soon be a part of our history books. This has been a stressful and uncertain journey for everyone. I’m joyfully and optimistically hopeful that this will be the spring that the world blossoms back to a more colorful and wonderful place than it ever was before. 

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